The suffering economy and the high unemployment rates have forced many home owners to undertake the task of home remodel and upgrades on their own without hiring a construction crew. This might take a little bit more time but the home owner can have a substantial savings and improve the value of their home with self base cabinet installation.
Here are ten tips to help any homeowner who has made the choice to install base cabinets on their own.
1) Make sure that your sub floor provides a level area for the base cabinets to sit upon. If the floor is in poor condition or not level then the cabinet installation will suffer. Nothing will be level and the cabinet doors will not remain closed and the overall strength of the cabinets will be seriously compromised. However, you will be faced with uneven floors due to natural settling of the home. With a few carpenter tricks you will be able to rectify the problem so your base cabinet installation is a breeze and everything looks wonderful.
2) Be sure to have a level on hand and also have plenty of shims to correct any spots that are not plumb or level.
3) Your first step in base cabinet installation is to find the highest spot on the floor. You can do this with a level. Once you have located the high spot mark it on the wall.
4) Please remember that the rear of the base cabinet must be level with the front of the cabinet. If the rear of the cabinet is higher then the front of the cabinet then you will have to utilize shims to level the overall cabinet out. If the highest point of the cabinet is in the front then you will have to raise the back.
5) Be sure to draw a vertical line at the top of the base cabinets on the wall all the way around so that you will know that your cabinets must be flush with the line. To draw your line use a 2×4 and a level. Remember that when measuring the top line of the cabinets be sure to start at the mark on your wall that shows where the highest spot on your floor is.
6) The standard cabinet height in the United States is 34.5 inches.
7) It is easier to attach all cabinets together before installing them on the wall. In order to do this use simple vice clamps. Yes, professional cabinet installers have a special set of clamps that they use for cabinets but there is not need for a typical home owner to rush out and buy these expensive clamps when you can use what you already own or what is far cheaper that you can use again on other projects. Always remove all the drawers and doors before installations for an easier job.
8) Before securing the cabinets to the wall make sure that everything is level and plumb. Check once and check twice. Always use top of the line screws when installing cabinets. Each screw should go into a stud a minimum of 1.5 inches and preferably deeper then that. Screws are expensive but they are worth the extra money to get high end ones.
9) If you need to use shims always use the shims where there is a wall stud because you will need to use a fastener driven straight through them so that you do not have to worry about the cabinets shifting at a later date and everything becoming uneven. A fastener will insure that the shims do not move so the cabinets are secure.
10) Once your cabinets are installed it is time to reattach all the doors and the drawers to the cabinets. Now you can admire your beautiful base cabinets that you easily installed by yourself. It is a job well done and you should feel a deep level of pride in your accomplishment.